The Rs.3.05-crore renovation and beautification project of the century-old Kanakakunnu Palace, an erstwhile durbar and banquet hall of the Travancore royal family and one of the key landmarks of the capital, has gathered momentum.
The project aimed at recapturing the glory and beauty of the imposing palace is being executed without causing disturbance to early morning joggers and tourists who step in after visiting the adjacent zoo and museum.
Constructing the age-old stone steps from the entrance to the palace and erecting royal gates in the main entry have commenced. The Kerala Land Development Corporation (KLDC), which is executing the work for Kerala Tourism, has barricaded the area where the work is on.
The Nishagandhi auditorium, on the sprawling palace premises, is also being renovated simultaneously.
The project comprises renovating the garden on the slopes of the palace, setting up lights, constructing lawns to showcase its natural beauty, planting trees, widening the parking area and putting up signages to guide the visitors.
The 18-acre green lung is being landscaped along with the maintenance of existing structures and changes in entry to the palace grounds. The slopes are being made gentle to give better look to the imposing palace listed by the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) as a heritage monument.
The leisure park is proposed to be built to the left of the main entrance of the palace, behind the statue of the former Chief Minister K. Karunakaran.
Widening of the walkway around the palace for the public is also part of the project that is to be completed in August ahead of the week-long Onam celebrations of Kerala Tourism in the capital.